British American Tobacco (BAT) said on Thursday that it has sued PMI’s companies in the US and Germany, alleging that the tobacco heating technology used in its iQOS device infringes its own patents.
British American Tobacco said it has filed two patent infringement lawsuits against PMI in the United States, one through the International Trade Commission (ITC) and the other in the United States Federal Court of Virginia in order to seek remedies for damage, and a ban on importing the product.
British American Tobacco’s lawsuit against Philip Morris International in Germany and the United States focuses on the heater technology used in iQOS.
British American Tobacco says this is an early version of the technology currently used in its global tobacco heating devices. The company has plans to launch products worldwide in Germany this year.
British American Tobacco spokesman Will Hill said in a comment that if they win, unless Philip Morris agrees, they may obtain an International Trade Commission (ITC) exclusion order to prevent the import of iQOS to the United States.
Philip Morris International started selling iQOS in the US last year. The device is currently the only heat not burn product approved for sale in the United States.
Philip Morris International said in a statement that we have seen media reports that British American Tobacco has filed legal proceedings, but has not yet assessed its allegations. “However, we can say that we will defend ourselves vigorously.”
British American Tobacco said the cases of the International Trade Commission (ITC) and the District Court will be dealt with separately, and the court’s judgments are not dependent on each other.
In the UK, British American Tobacco said it was responding to the validity of Philip Morris ’patents in response to Philip Morris America ’s lawsuit against British American Tobacco in Japan.
At present, British American Tobacco has not disclosed the amount of compensation required in all cases.